Halloween can sometimes be a scary time for toddlers and young children. Between scary costumes, creepy decorations and loud fireworks, it can leave your little one feeling less than festive. We’ve compiled our best tips for getting the littlest members of the family to enjoy this time of year to the fullest.
One of the best ways to get involved in Halloween festivities is to dress up in a costume. Buy or make a costume that will make your toddler feel super cool. They could choose to dress up as their favourite cartoon character or superhero, or a classic witch or ghost.
Make sure to do a trial run of their costume before the big night to see if they can move around easily and if there are irritating labels or tags that need to be removed.
If you’re buying a costume make sure it’s marked with the CE safety mark. Costumes without this safety marking can be extremely flammable or contain high levels of toxins.
Keep in mind that bulky costumes can cause your child’s car seat harness to be too loose, similar to a puffy coat. So, if you’re driving somewhere to celebrate Halloween, dress your child normally, then change them into their costume once you arrive.
Bring your little one along to a pumpkin patch to let them pick their favourite pumpkin to bring home and decorate. Pumpkin patches are incredibly busy this time of year so if you can’t get a slot to go, then make your own at home. Simply buy some pumpkins in the supermarket and scatter them in your garden. Excitedly tell your little one about all the pumpkins that have suddenly sprouted in the garden and invite them to come to pick some with you!
Carving a pumpkin is an excellent opportunity for some messy play with your little one. Cut a lid on the top of the pumpkin and allow them to get hands-on with the squishy insides. Give them different tools like a large spoon or tongs to help develop their coordination using utensils. Once the insides are scooped out you can carve out your pumpkin’s expression. Let your little one decide what kind of facial expression they’d like their pumpkin to have, depending on their age they could draw the face for you to cut out.
Supervise your child at all times while scooping out the insides of a pumpkin as pumpkin seeds are a choking hazard if eaten.
Don’t fancy getting messy? Instead of carving the pumpkins, you can paint them instead. Your little one can have complete artistic freedom to make their pumpkin look however they want. You could even incorporate some water play by washing your pumpkins in soapy water before painting them.
There are lots of treats that even the littlest kids can help to make. You could make chocolate apples with fun Halloween sprinkles, bake Halloween cookies or decorate spooky cupcakes! Need some design inspiration? There are lots of super simple tutorials on Youtube to make your designs look impressive!
A great opportunity to show off your cool costumes is to go Trick-or-Treating with your little ones. They’ll love the novelty of being out celebrating after dark and the atmosphere as all the other children excitedly go door-to-door. If you’re not comfortable with bringing your little one to a stranger’s door then you could stick to visiting the neighbours you know really well or trick-or-treat at family and friends’ houses.
If you’re not sure about going out in the noise and commotion, you can also stay home and enjoy handing out sweets to trick-or-treaters. Have your little one help you prepare the goodies to hand out at the door. They’ll be so excited every time the doorbell rings!
The best way to set the mood is with music. Choose a kids’ Halloween playlist and enjoy dancing to the spooky tunes while you do your Halloween activities!